The Quick Report

These 3 Lottery Stories Will Convince You That Miracles Do Happen

These three lottery stories are sure to boost your faith in humanity (and maybe your hopes of winning): How fortune cookie numbers won $50,000, how a sister picked a teen’s $1M winning ticket, and how a man shared half of a $100K prize with a friend.

When lotteries became legal in more places throughout the United States, fortune cookies began to not only contain a prediction for one’s fortune, but the tiny slip of paper also began to feature lottery numbers. 

Tierra Barley from Virginia decided to test her fate by playing the numbers she found inside a fortune cookie on the Powerball. In fact, Barley always plays the numbers for Powerball whenever she sees them inside a fortune cookie.

In late May, Barley played the “lucky” numbers on a ticket she bought from the Varina Superstore Supermarket on Darbytown Road in Henrico.

However, after purchasing the ticket, Barley exited the store to take her daughter to the park and left the ticket behind. A short time later, realizing what she’d done, Barley returned to the store. Luckily, she was able to retrieve her ticket with help from another customer.

They say things happen in threes. Barley’s first “lucky” moment was the numbers she found inside her fortune cookie. Her second “lucky” moment was when she recovered her lost ticket. The third time Barley got “lucky” was when she matched all five Powerball numbers to win a $50,000 prize.

Man shares half of lottery prize with friend

Curtis Hudson of Laurinburg, North Carolina, won a big prize on a scratch-off lottery ticket in late May. When asked what strategy or games he plays, Hudson said, “Whatever I feel good about at the time, that’s what I buy.”

But years ago, Hudson made a pact with a friend. “We decided if either of us won a big prize, we would split it,” Walter Bonds said. “And we are both men of our word.”

That promise was recently put to the test.

Hudson won $100,000 from a $2,000,000 Diamond Deluxe ticket. Keeping his promise, the first thing Hudson did after winning was call Bonds. 

“I could hear it in his voice,” Bonds recalled. Hudson shared his $100,000 winnings 50/50. Just as promised. 

Hudson plans to use his $50,000 for home improvement projects, while Bonds says his will go to savings.

Sister picks teen’s winning lottery ticket

In late May, teenager Jalen McLean of Raleigh, North Carolina, gave some money to his sister. He asked her to buy him a scratch-off lottery ticket. McLean’s sister, Dasha Silas, headed to the Valero on South McPherson Church Road in Fayetteville.

Dasha decided to select a $10 Jumbo Bucks ticket. She returned home and gave the ticket back to her brother. She watched as he scratched it off.

“He had a huge smile on his face,” Silas recalled. “Like so big it looked like the movie character Venom.”

Anyone would have a smile on their face when they discovered what Jalen did after he scratched the ticket off.

Jalen hit the game’s top prize: $1 million.

“I feel like the luckiest guy in the universe,” Jalen said. “How many 18-year-olds win something like this?”

The teen decided to receive the prize as an annuity of $50,000 over 20 years to ensure he got the full $1 million prize. After taxes, McLean received his first annual check of $35,753. He will continue to receive a check every year for the next 19 years. McLean is the youngest of five siblings. 

When asked what he planned to do with his winnings, Jalen said he plans on buying an Audi.

Could you be next?